COMMEMORATING RENOWNED SINOLOGIST DIEGO DE PANTOJA
On September 5 and 6, Beijing Foreign Studies University (BFSU) held an international academic symposium to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the death of Spanish sinologist Diego de Pantoja (1571–1618). The symposium re-examined Pantoja’s pioneering role in facilitating communication between China and western countries and expressed appreciation for the cultural heritage he left behind. Experts and scholars in the fields of history and international relations attended the symposium.
The documentary film Pantoja and China, written by Ana Fernández de Francisco and produced by the Cervantes Institute, premiered during the symposium to recognise this outstanding sinologist. After the film, renowned scholars, experts and researchers from China, Spain and Latin America answered journalists’ questions. Gloria Minguez, the cultural counsellor with the Spanish Embassy to China; BFSU representatives; and Inma González Puy, director of the Beijing Cervantes Institute, all attended the event.
The Year of Pantoja was created to commemorate the death of this eminent sinologist 400 years ago. For a long time, Pantoja’s work in cultural communication between China and the West, and in introducing China to the West, has been overlooked. However, his life truly marked a milestone in the history of sinology and opened up new research directions for those who came after him.